161216 getty bayofislands

If you haven’t heard of the Bay of Islands in New Zealand, then it’s time that changed. Comprised of over 140 islands, the area is full of untouched beaches, Maori history, great food and plenty of things to see and do. But where to start?

Eat at 35° South, Paihia

Enjoy your meal with amazing waterfront views at 35° South.  

On their extensive menu, our go-to dish is the 35° South Seafood Bouillabaisse giving you an opportunity to taste a medley of fresh seafood. For dessert, try the the Brown Sugar Pavlova, an interesting spin on the beloved classic.  

69 Marsden Rd, Paihia 0247

Visit Waitangi Treaty Grounds

Just 10 minutes from Paihia, the Waiting Treaty Grounds is where the first 43 Maori chiefs signed the Treaty of Waitangi with the British Crown in 1840. Your entry fee of $20 includes access to the Treaty Grounds, a guided tour and a culture performance. You can also visit the Te Kōngahu Museum of Waitangi, which showcases exhibitions and information on the significant area.

Tau Henare Dr, Waitangi 0293

Totem statue in large room

Photo Credit: Destination Northland

Go swimming with dolphins, Paihia

Watch dolphins in their natural environment as you cruise the area on a catamaran designed for dolphin watching and swimming. Once you’ve found a pod of the stunning creatures, you'll be able to swim with them. Tours operate from January to April and October to December. 

People watch dolphin jump from water

Photo Credit: Fraser Clements

Go to Sullivan’s Beach, Paihia

Check out the local’s favourite, Sullivan’s Beach. It’s just outside of Paihia and is secluded with no road access. To access it, you’ll have to walk around the rocks from the southern end of the main beach.